Cancer is an uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells. It is found in animals as well as humans. There are many different types of cancer that are found in animals, symptoms are often similar to those in people (eg. abnormal swelling, unexplained weight loss, lethargy / reluctance to exercise etc). Cancer is one of the leading causes of death in companion animals such as dogs and cats, it is particularly common in animals that live 10 years or longer. If treatment is appropriate this may include chemotherapy and surgery or radiotherapy.
Nielsen CE, Wang X, Robinson RJ, et al. Carcinogenic and inflammatory effects of plutonium-nitrate retention in an exposed nuclear worker and beagle dogs. Int J Radiat Biol. 2014; 90(1):60-70 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: Plutonium-nitrate has a moderately rapid translocation rate from the lung to blood stream. Previous studies have shown an unexpected retention of soluble plutonium in the beagles and human case studied here. The inflammatory responses that may be associated with long-term exposure to ionizing radiation were characterized. These pathways include tissue injury, apoptosis, and gene expression modifications. Other protein modifications related to carcinogenesis and inflammation and the various factors that may play a role in orchestrating complex interactions which influence tissue integrity following irradiation were investigated. MATERIALS AND METHODS: We have examined numerous lung samples from a plutonium-exposed worker, a human control, and a variety of plutonium-exposed beagle dogs using immunohistochemistry and quantitative Reverse Transcriptase-Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR). RESULTS: The exposed human showed interstitial fibrosis in peripheral regions of the lung, but no pulmonary tumors. Beagles with similar doses were diagnosed with tumors in bronchiolo-alveolar, peripheral and sub-pleural alveolar regions of the lung. The terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase dUTP nick end labeling (TUNEL) assay showed an elevation of apoptosis in tracheal mucosa, tumor cells, and nuclear debris in the alveoli and lymph nodes of the beagles but not in the human case. In both the beagles and human there were statistically significant modifications in the expression of Fas ligand (FASLG), B-cell lymphoma 2 (BCL2), and Caspase 3 (CASP3). CONCLUSIONS: The data suggests that FASLG, BCL2, CASP3 and apoptosis play a role in the inflammatory responses following prolonged plutonium exposure. Utilizing these unique tissues revealed which pathways are triggered following the internal deposition and long-term retention of plutonium-nitrate in a human and a large animal model.
Ito J, Watanabe S, Hiratsuka T, et al. Refrex-1, a soluble restriction factor against feline endogenous and exogenous retroviruses. J Virol. 2013; 87(22):12029-40 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/05/2014 Related Publications
The host defense against viral infection is acquired during the coevolution or symbiosis of the host and pathogen. Several cellular factors that restrict retroviral infection have been identified in the hosts. Feline leukemia virus (FeLV) is a gammaretrovirus that is classified into several receptor interference groups, including a novel FeLV-subgroup D (FeLV-D) that we recently identified. FeLV-D is generated by transduction of the env gene of feline endogenous gammaretrovirus of the domestic cat (ERV-DCs) into FeLV. Some ERV-DCs are replication competent viruses which are present and hereditary in cats. We report here the determination of new viral receptor interference groups and the discovery of a soluble antiretroviral factor, termed Refrex-1. Detailed analysis of FeLV-D strains and ERV-DCs showed two receptor interference groups that are distinct from other FeLV subgroups, and Refrex-1 specifically inhibited one of them. Refrex-1 is characterized as a truncated envelope protein of ERV-DC and includes the N-terminal region of surface unit, which is a putative receptor-binding domain, but lacks the transmembrane region. Refrex-1 is efficiently secreted from the cells and appears to cause receptor interference extracellularly. Two variants of Refrex-1 encoded by provirus loci, ERV-DC7 and DC16, are expressed in a broad range of feline tissues. The host retains Refrex-1 as an antiretroviral factor, which may potentially prevent reemergence of the ERVs and the emergence of novel ERV-related viruses in cats. Refrex-1 may have been acquired during endogenization of ERV-DCs and may play an important role in retroviral restriction and antiviral defense in cats.
Fukumoto S, Hanazono K, Fu DR, et al. A new treatment for human malignant melanoma targeting L-type amino acid transporter 1 (LAT1): a pilot study in a canine model. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2013; 439(1):103-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
L-type amino acid transporter 1 (LAT1), an isoform of amino acid transport system L, transports branched or aromatic amino acids essential for fundamental cellular activities such as cellular growth, proliferation and maintenance. This amino acid transporter recently has received attention because of its preferential and up-regulated expression in a variety of human tumors in contrast to its limited distribution and low-level expression in normal tissues. In this study, we explored the feasibility of using LAT1 inhibitor as a new therapeutic agent for human malignant melanomas (MM) using canine spontaneous MM as a model for human MM. A comparative study of LAT expression was performed in 48 normal tissues, 25MM tissues and five cell lines established from MM. The study observed LAT1 mRNA levels from MM tissues and cell lines that were significantly (P<0.01) higher than in normal tissues. Additionally, MM with distant metastasis showed a higher expression than those without distant metastasis. Functional analysis of LAT1 was performed on one of the five cell lines, CMeC-1. [(3)H]l-Leucine uptake and cellular growth activities in CMeC-1 were inhibited in a dose-dependent manner by selective LAT1 inhibitors (2-amino-2-norbornane-carboxylic acid, BCH and melphalan, LPM). Inhibitory growth activities of various conventional anti-cancer drugs, including carboplatin, cyclophosphamide, dacarbazine, doxorubicin, mitoxantrone, nimustine, vinblastine and vincristine, were significantly (P<0.05) enhanced by combination use with BCH or LPM. These findings suggest that LAT1 could be a new therapeutic target for MM.
Boerkamp KM, van der Kooij M, van Steenbeek FG, et al. Gene expression profiling of histiocytic sarcomas in a canine model: the predisposed flatcoated retriever dog. PLoS One. 2013; 8(8):e71094 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/05/2014 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: The determination of altered expression of genes in specific tumor types and their effect upon cellular processes may create insight in tumorigenesis and help to design better treatments. The Flatcoated retriever is a dog breed with an exceptionally high incidence of histiocytic sarcomas. The breed develops two distinct entities of histiocytic neoplasia, a soft tissue form and a visceral form. Gene expression studies of these tumors have value for comparable human diseases such as histiocytic/dendritic cell sarcoma for which knowledge is difficult to accrue due to their rare occurrence. In addition, such studies may help in the search for genetic aberrations underlying the genetic predisposition in this dog breed. METHODS: Microarray analysis and pathway analyses were performed on fresh-frozen tissues obtained from Flatcoated retrievers with localized, soft tissue histiocytic sarcomas (STHS) and disseminated, visceral histiocytic sarcomas (VHS) and on normal canine spleens from various breeds. Expression differences of nine genes were validated with quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) analyses. RESULTS: QPCR analyses identified the significantly altered expression of nine genes; PPBP, SpiC, VCAM1, ENPEP, ITGAD (down-regulated), and GTSF1, Col3a1, CD90 and LUM (up-regulated) in the comparison of both the soft tissue and the visceral form with healthy spleen. DAVID pathway analyses revealed 24 pathways that were significantly involved in the development of HS in general, most of which were involved in the DNA repair and replication process. CONCLUSIONS: This study identified altered expression of nine genes not yet implicated in histiocytic sarcoma manifestations in the dog nor in comparable human histiocytic/dendritic sarcomas. Exploration of the downside effect of canine inbreeding strategies for the study of similar sarcomas in humans might also lead to the identification of genes related to these rare malignancies in the human.
Gupta SC, Sung B, Prasad S, et al. Cancer drug discovery by repurposing: teaching new tricks to old dogs. Trends Pharmacol Sci. 2013; 34(9):508-17 [PubMed] Related Publications
Progressively increasing failure rates, high cost, poor bioavailability, poor safety, limited efficacy, and a lengthy design and testing process associated with cancer drug development have necessitated alternative approaches to drug discovery. Exploring established non-cancer drugs for anticancer activity provides an opportunity rapidly to advance therapeutic strategies into clinical trials. The impetus for development of cancer therapeutics from non-cancer drugs stems from the fact that different diseases share common molecular pathways and targets in the cell. Common molecular origins of diverse diseases have been discovered through advancements in genomics, proteomics, and informatics technologies, as well as through the development of analytical tools that allow researchers simultaneously to screen large numbers of existing drugs against a particular disease target. Thus, drugs originally identified as antitussive, sedative, analgesic, antipyretic, antiarthritic, anesthetic, antidiabetic, muscle relaxant, immunosuppressant, antibiotic, antiepileptic, cardioprotective, antihypertensive, erectile function enhancing, or angina relieving are being repurposed for cancer. This review describes the repurposing of these drugs for cancer treatment.
Andersen NJ, Nickoloff BJ, Dykema KJ, et al. Pharmacologic inhibition of MEK signaling prevents growth of canine hemangiosarcoma. Mol Cancer Ther. 2013; 12(9):1701-14 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/09/2014 Related Publications
Angiosarcoma is a rare neoplasm of endothelial origin that has limited treatment options and poor five-year survival. As a model for human angiosarcoma, we studied primary cells and tumorgrafts derived from canine hemangiosarcoma (HSA), which is also an endothelial malignancy with similar presentation and histology. Primary cells isolated from HSA showed constitutive extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) activation. The mitogen-activated protein/extracellular signal-regulated kinase (MEK) inhibitor CI-1040 reduced ERK activation and the viability of primary cells derived from visceral, cutaneous, and cardiac HSA in vitro. HSA-derived primary cells were also sensitive to sorafenib, an inhibitor of B-Raf and multireceptor tyrosine kinases. In vivo, CI-1040 or PD0325901 decreased the growth of cutaneous cell-derived xenografts and cardiac-derived tumorgrafts. Sorafenib decreased tumor size in both in vivo models, although cardiac tumorgrafts were more sensitive. In human angiosarcoma, we noted that 50% of tumors stained positively for phosphorylated ERK1/2 and that the expression of several MEK-responsive transcription factors was upregulated. Our data showed that MEK signaling is essential for the growth of HSA in vitro and in vivo and provided evidence that the same pathways are activated in human angiosarcoma. This indicates that MEK inhibitors may form part of an effective therapeutic strategy for the treatment of canine HSA or human angiosarcoma, and it highlights the use of spontaneous canine cancers as a model of human disease.
Westberg S, Sadeghi A, Svensson E, et al. Treatment efficacy and immune stimulation by AdCD40L gene therapy of spontaneous canine malignant melanoma. J Immunother. 2013 Jul-Aug; 36(6):350-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
Malignant melanoma is a serious disease in both humans and dogs, and the high metastatic potential results in poor prognosis for many patients. Its similarities with human melanoma make spontaneous canine melanoma an excellent model for comparative studies of novel therapies and tumor biology. We report a pilot study of local adenovector CD40L (AdCD40L) immunogene treatment in 19 cases of canine melanoma (14 oral, 4 cutaneous, and 1 conjunctival). Three patients were World Health Organization stage I, 2 were stage II, 10 stage III, and 4 stage IV. One to 6 intratumoral injections of AdCD40L were given every 7 days, followed by cytoreductive surgery in 9 cases and only immunotherapy in 10 cases. Tumor tissue was infiltrated with T and B lymphocytes after treatment, suggesting immune stimulation. The best overall response included 5 complete responses, 8 partial responses, and 4 stable and 2 progressive disease statuses according to the World Health Organization response criteria. Median survival was 160 days (range, 20-1141 d), with 3 dogs still alive at submission. Our results suggest that local AdCD40L therapy is safe and could have beneficial effects in dogs, supporting further treatment development. Clinical translation to human patients is in progress.
Richards KL, Motsinger-Reif AA, Chen HW, et al. Gene profiling of canine B-cell lymphoma reveals germinal center and postgerminal center subtypes with different survival times, modeling human DLBCL. Cancer Res. 2013; 73(16):5029-39 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/08/2014 Related Publications
Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) is the most common lymphoma subtype, and fewer than half of patients are cured with standard first-line therapy. To improve therapeutic options, better animal models that accurately mimic human DLBCL (hDLBCL) are needed. Canine DLBCL, one of the most common cancers in veterinary oncology, is morphologically similar to hDLBCL and is treated using similar chemotherapeutic protocols. With genomic technologies, it is now possible to molecularly evaluate dogs as a potential large-animal model for hDLBCL. We evaluated canine B-cell lymphomas (cBCL) using immunohistochemistry (IHC) and gene expression profiling. cBCL expression profiles were similar in many ways to hDLBCLs. For instance, a subset had increased expression of NF-κB pathway genes, mirroring human activated B-cell (ABC)-type DLBCL. Furthermore, immunoglobulin heavy chain ongoing mutation status, which is correlated with ABC/germinal center B-cell cell of origin in hDLBCL, separated cBCL into two groups with statistically different progression-free and overall survival times. In contrast with hDLBCL, cBCL rarely expressed BCL6 and MUM1/IRF4 by IHC. Collectively, these studies identify molecular similarities to hDLBCL that introduce pet dogs as a representative model of hDLBCL for future studies, including therapeutic clinical trials.
Leonardi L, Quattrini I, Roperto F, Benassi MS Protease expression in giant cell tumour of bone: a comparative study on feline and human samples. Res Vet Sci. 2013; 95(2):310-5 [PubMed] Related Publications
Human giant cell tumour of bone (GCTB) is a rare low grade of malignancy tumour with tendency to recur. During tumourigenesis the bone remodeling balance is subverted by the tumour cellular components that interacting with bone matrix induce release of growth factors and cytokines, promoting cell proliferation and bone resorption. The master regulators of this positive feed-back are acid and neutral proteases that destroying extracellular matrix increase osteolysis. In contrast, in cats, very few data are reported on GCTB biological activity. In this study, histological features and metalloproteinase (MMPs) and urokinase plasminogen activator system (uPA) expression were compared in human and feline GCTB and differences in distribution and intensity related to histological pattern and clinical behaviour were determined. In both species, the overexpression of these molecules suggested a strong and complex cross-talk between tumour and microenvironment.
Noguchi S, Mori T, Hoshino Y, et al. MicroRNAs as tumour suppressors in canine and human melanoma cells and as a prognostic factor in canine melanomas. Vet Comp Oncol. 2013; 11(2):113-23 [PubMed] Related Publications
Malignant melanoma (MM) is one of the most aggressive cancers in dogs and in humans. However, the molecular mechanisms of its development and progression remain unclear. Presently, we examined the expression profile of microRNAs (miRs) in canine oral MM tissues and paired normal oral mucosa tissues by using the microRNA-microarray assay and quantitative RT-PCR. Importantly, a decreased expression of miR-203 was significantly associated with a shorter survival time. Also, miR-203 and -205 were markedly down-regulated in canine and human MM cell lines tested. Furthermore, the ectopic expression of miR-205 had a significant inhibitory effect on the cell growth of canine and human melanoma cells tested by targeting erbb3. Our data suggest that miR-203 is a new prognostic factor in canine oral MMs and that miR-205 functions as a tumour suppressor by targeting erbb3 in both canine and human MM cells.
Karyadi DM, Karlins E, Decker B, et al. A copy number variant at the KITLG locus likely confers risk for canine squamous cell carcinoma of the digit. PLoS Genet. 2013; 9(3):e1003409 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/08/2014 Related Publications
The domestic dog is a robust model for studying the genetics of complex disease susceptibility. The strategies used to develop and propagate modern breeds have resulted in an elevated risk for specific diseases in particular breeds. One example is that of Standard Poodles (STPOs), who have increased risk for squamous cell carcinoma of the digit (SCCD), a locally aggressive cancer that causes lytic bone lesions, sometimes with multiple toe recurrence. However, only STPOs of dark coat color are at high risk; light colored STPOs are almost entirely unaffected, suggesting that interactions between multiple pathways are necessary for oncogenesis. We performed a genome-wide association study (GWAS) on STPOs, comparing 31 SCCD cases to 34 unrelated black STPO controls. The peak SNP on canine chromosome 15 was statistically significant at the genome-wide level (P(raw) = 1.60 × 10(-7); P(genome) = 0.0066). Additional mapping resolved the region to the KIT Ligand (KITLG) locus. Comparison of STPO cases to other at-risk breeds narrowed the locus to a 144.9-Kb region. Haplotype mapping among 84 STPO cases identified a minimal region of 28.3 Kb. A copy number variant (CNV) containing predicted enhancer elements was found to be strongly associated with SCCD in STPOs (P = 1.72 × 10(-8)). Light colored STPOs carry the CNV risk alleles at the same frequency as black STPOs, but are not susceptible to SCCD. A GWAS comparing 24 black and 24 light colored STPOs highlighted only the MC1R locus as significantly different between the two datasets, suggesting that a compensatory mutation within the MC1R locus likely protects light colored STPOs from disease. Our findings highlight a role for KITLG in SCCD susceptibility, as well as demonstrate that interactions between the KITLG and MC1R loci are potentially required for SCCD oncogenesis. These findings highlight how studies of breed-limited diseases are useful for disentangling multigene disorders.
Cekanova M, Uddin MJ, Bartges JW, et al. Molecular imaging of cyclooxygenase-2 in canine transitional cell carcinomas in vitro and in vivo. Cancer Prev Res (Phila). 2013; 6(5):466-76 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/05/2014 Related Publications
The enzyme COX-2 is induced at high levels in tumors but not in surrounding normal tissues, which makes it an attractive target for molecular imaging of cancer. We evaluated the ability of novel optical imaging agent, fluorocoxib A to detect urinary bladder canine transitional cell carcinomas (K9TCC). Here, we show that fluorocoxib A uptake overlapped with COX-2 expression in primary K9TCC cells in vitro. Using subcutaneously implanted primary K9TCC in athymic mice, we show specific uptake of fluorocoxib A by COX-2-expressing K9TCC xenograft tumors in vivo. Fluorocoxib A uptake by COX-2-expressing xenograft tumors was blocked by 70% (P < 0.005) when pretreated with the COX-2 selective inhibitor, celecoxib (10 mg/kg), 4 hours before intravenous administration of fluorocoxib A (1 mg/kg). Fluorocoxib A was taken up by COX-2-expressing tumors but not by COX-2-negative human UMUC-3 xenograft tumors. UMUC-3 xenograft tumors with no expression of COX-2 showed no uptake of fluorocoxib A. In addition, fluorocoxib A uptake was evaluated in five dogs diagnosed with TCC. Fluorocoxib A specifically detected COX-2-expressing K9TCC during cystoscopy in vivo but was not detected in normal urothelium. Taken together, our findings show that fluorocoxib A selectively bound to COX-2-expressing primary K9TCC cells in vitro, COX-2-expressing K9TCC xenografts tumors in nude mice, and heterogeneous canine TCC during cystoscopy in vivo. Spontaneous cancers in companion animals offer a unique translational model for evaluation of novel imaging and therapeutic agents using primary cancer cells in vitro and in heterogeneous cancers in vivo.
Mordoh J, Tapia IJ, Barrio MM A word of caution: do not wake sleeping dogs; micrometastases of melanoma suddenly grew after progesterone treatment. BMC Cancer. 2013; 13:132 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/05/2014 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Hormonal treatment might affect the immune response to tumor antigens induced in cancer patients who are being vaccinated. CASE PRESENTATION: A 33-year-old woman was diagnosed with cutaneous melanoma in May 2009. Her melanoma was located in the intermammary sulcus, had a Breslow thickness of 4 mm, a Clark's level IV, it was ulcerated and highly melanotic. The bilateral sentinel node biopsy was negative. She entered into a randomized Phase II/III clinical study comparing a vaccine composed of irradiated melanoma cells plus BCG plus GM-CSF versus IFN-alpha 2b and she was assigned to the vaccine arm. During the two years treatment she remained disease-free; the final CAT scan being performed in August 2011. Between November and December 2011, her gynecologist treated her with three cycles of 200 mg progesterone/day for ten days, every two weeks, for ovary dysfunction. In November 2011 the patient returned to the Hospital for clinical and imaging evaluation and no evidence of disease was found. At the next visit in March 2012 an ultrasound revealed multiple, large metastases in the liver. A CAT scan confirmed the presence of liver, adrenal glands and spleen metastases. A needle biopsy of a liver lesion revealed metastatic melanoma of similar characteristics to the original tumor. We suggest that progesterone treatment triggered proliferation of so far dormant micrometastases that were controlled during CSF470 vaccine treatment. CONCLUSION: The use of progesterone in patients with melanoma that are under immunological treatments should be carefully considered, since progesterone could modify the balance of pro-inflammatory and Th1 functions to a regulatory and anti-inflammatory profile of the immune system that could have an impact in tumor progression.
Miyata Y, Kanda S, Sakai H, Greer PA Feline sarcoma-related protein expression correlates with malignant aggressiveness and poor prognosis in renal cell carcinoma. Cancer Sci. 2013; 104(6):681-6 [PubMed] Related Publications
Feline sarcoma-related protein (Fer) is a ubiquitously expressed non-receptor protein tyrosine kinase associated with proliferation in various cancer cells. However, no reports have described the pathological roles and prognostic value of Fer expression in renal cell carcinoma (RCC). We investigated Fer expression in three RCC cell lines (ACHN, Caki-1, and Caki-2) and in normal tubule cells (HK-2) by immunoblotting. Fer expression was highest in ACHN cells, with Caki-1 showing intermediate levels and Caki-2 showing low levels, and was undetectable in HK-2. RNA interference was therefore used to assess the effects of Fer knockdown in ACHN. Knockdown of Fer expression was found to inhibit RCC cell proliferation and colony formation. Immunohistochemical analysis of 131 human RCC tissues (110 conventional, 11 chromophobe, and 10 papillary) investigated relationships between Fer expression and clinicopathological features, including cancer cell proliferation, apoptosis, and prognostic value for survival. In human tissues, Fer expression was significantly higher in cancer cells than in normal tubules. In addition, expression levels correlated with cancer cell proliferation, but not with apoptosis. Multivariate analysis indicated associations of Fer expression with pT stage, tumor grade, and metastasis (P < 0.001). Fer expression was also prognostic for cause-specific survival according to multivariate analysis (hazard ratio, 3.89; 95% confidence interval, 1.02-14.84, P = 0.047). Fer expression correlates with RCC cell proliferation both in vitro and in vivo, and with tumor progression and survival. This represents useful information for discussing the pathological and clinical significance of Fer in RCC.
Chiu HC, Chow KC, Fan YH, et al. Expression of EBV-encoded oncogenes and EBV-like virions in multiple canine tumors. Vet Microbiol. 2013; 163(1-2):79-89 [PubMed] Related Publications
Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) is a ubiquitous human oncovirus. Previous studies by us and others have indicated that pet dogs frequently encounter EBV or EBV-related viral infection. In this study, we explored whether EBV is involved in canine malignancies in dogs. EBV-specific BamHI W sequence was detected by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) in 10 of 12 canine tumor specimens, including 8 of 10 oral tumors. Using reverse transcription-PCR, gene expressions of latent membrane protein 1 (LMP 1) and BamHI H rightward reading frame 1 (BHRF1) were identified in 8 and 7 of 12 specimens, respectively. A novel LMP1 variant, T0905, was predominant in 5 canine tumor specimens and found to exist in EBV positive human BC-2 cells. Another LMP1 variant, T0902, was similar to human tumor variant JB7. The BHRF1 sequence identified from these canine tumors was identical to that of the B95-8 viral strain. LMP1 protein and EBV-encoded RNA (EBER) were detected by immunohistochemistry and fluorescent in situ hybridization, respectively, in several tumors, particularly in tumor nests of oral amelanotic melanomas. Furthermore, EBV-like virions adopting a herpesvirus egress pathway were detected in a canthal fibroblastic osteosarcoma and an oral amelanotic melanoma. In conclusion, we report the expressions of BHRF1 transcript (a viral anti-apoptotic protein), LMP1 (a viral oncoprotein) transcript and protein, EBER (a viral oncogenic RNA), and EBV-like virions in multiple canine tumors. The identity of BHRF1 and the resemblance of LMP1 variants between canine and human tumors indicate either a close evolutionary relationship between canine and human EBV, or the possibility of zoonotic transmission.
Giantin M, Aresu L, Aricò A, et al. Evaluation of tyrosine-kinase receptor c-KIT (c-KIT) mutations, mRNA and protein expression in canine leukemia: might c-KIT represent a therapeutic target? Vet Immunol Immunopathol. 2013; 152(3-4):325-32 [PubMed] Related Publications
The tyrosine-kinase receptor c-KIT (c-KIT) plays an important role in proliferation, survival and differentiation of progenitor cells in normal hematopoietic cells. In human hematological malignancies, c-KIT is mostly expressed by progenitor cell neoplasia and seldom by those involving mature cells. Tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) are actually licensed for the first- and second-line treatment of human hematologic disorders. Aim of the present study was to evaluate c-KIT mRNA and protein expression and complementary DNA (cDNA) mutations in canine leukemia. Eleven acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) and acute undifferentiated leukemia (AUL) and 12 chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) were enrolled in this study. The amounts of c-KIT mRNA and protein were determined, in peripheral blood samples, by using quantitative real time RT-PCR, flow cytometry and immunocytochemistry, respectively. The presence of mutations on c-KIT exons 8-11 and 17 were investigated by cDNA sequencing. Higher amounts of c-KIT mRNA were found in ALL/AUL compared to CLL, and this latter showed a lower pattern of gene expression. Transcriptional data were confirmed at the protein level. No significant gain-of-function mutations were ever observed in both ALL/AUL and CLL. Among canine hematological malignancies, ALL/AUL typically show a very aggressive biological behavior, partly being attributable to the lack of efficacious therapeutic options. The high level of c-KIT expression found in canine ALL/AUL might represent the rationale for using TKIs in future clinical trials.
Schmidt S, Fracasso G, Colombatti M, Naim HY Cloning and characterization of canine prostate-specific membrane antigen. Prostate. 2013; 73(6):642-50 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Prostate-specific membrane antigen (PSMA) is a promising biomarker in the diagnosis of prostate cancer and a potential target for antibody-based therapeutic strategies. We isolated the canine PSMA cDNA and investigated the cellular and biochemical characteristics of the recombinant protein as a potential target for animal preclinical studies of antibody based-therapies. METHODS: Canine PSMA cDNA was isolated by PCR, cloned into expression vectors and transfected into COS-1 and MDCK cells. The biosynthesis and glycosylation of the recombinant protein were investigated in pulse-chase experiments, the cellular localization by confocal laser microscopy, the mode of association of PSMA with the membrane with solubilization in different detergents and its quaternary structure in sucrose-density gradients. RESULTS: Canine PSMA shows 91% amino acid homology to human PSMA, whereby the major difference is a longer cytoplasmic tail of canine PSMA compared to its human counterpart. Canine PSMA is trafficked efficiently along the secretory pathway, undergoes homodimerization when it acquires complex glycosylated mature form. It associates with detergent-resistant membranes, which act as platforms along its intracellular trafficking. Confocal analysis revealed canine PSMA at the cell surface, Golgi, and the endoplasmic reticulum. A similar distribution is revealed for human PSMA, yet with reduced cell surface levels. CONCLUSIONS: The cloning, expression, biosynthesis, processing and localization of canine PSMA in mammalian cells is described. We demonstrate that canine PSMA reveals similar characteristics to human PSMA rendering this protein useful as a translational model for investigations of prostate cancer as well as a suitable antigen for targeted therapy studies in dogs.
de Andrés PJ, Illera JC, Cáceres S, et al. Increased levels of interleukins 8 and 10 as findings of canine inflammatory mammary cancer. Vet Immunol Immunopathol. 2013; 152(3-4):245-51 [PubMed] Related Publications
Inflammatory mammary cancer (IMC) is a distinct form of mammary cancer that affects dogs and women [in humans, IMC is known as inflammatory breast cancer (IBC)], and is characterized by a sudden onset and an aggressive clinical course. Spontaneous canine IMC shares epidemiologic, histopathological and clinical characteristics with the disease in humans and has been proposed as the best spontaneous animal model for studying IBC, although several aspects remain unstudied. Interleukins (ILs) play an important role in cancer as potential modulators of angiogenesis, leukocyte infiltration and tumor growth. The aims of the present study were to assess serum and tumor levels of several ILs (IL-1α, IL-1β, IL-6, IL-8 and IL-10) by enzyme-immunoassay in dogs bearing benign and malignant mammary tumors, including dogs with IMC, for a better understanding of this disease. Forty-eight dogs were prospectively included. Animals consisted of 7 healthy Beagles used as donors for normal mammary glands (NMG) and serum controls (SCs), 10 dogs with hyperplasias and benign mammary tumors (HBMT), 24 with non-inflammatory malignant mammary tumors (non-IMC MMT) and 7 dogs with clinical and pathological IMC. IL-8 (serum) and IL-10 (serum and tissue homogenate) levels were higher in the dogs with IMC compared with the non-IMC MMT group. ILs were increased with tumor malignancy as follows: in tumor homogenates IL-6 levels were higher in malignant tumors (IMC and non-IMC MMT) versus HBMT and versus NMG and tumor IL-8 was increased in malignant tumors versus NMG; in serum, IL-1α and IL-8 levels were higher in the malignant groups respect to HBMT and SCs; interestingly, IL-10 was elevated only in the serum of IMC animals. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report that analyzes ILs in IMC and IL-10 in canine mammary tumors. Our results indicate a role for IL-6, IL-8 and IL-10 in canine mammary malignancy and specific differences in ILs content in IMC versus non-IMC MMT that could have future diagnostic and therapeutic implications, to be confirmed in a larger series of IMC cases. These results help to support the validity of the IMC canine model for the study of human IBC and provide insight into this uncommon malignancy in dogs.
Marley K, Helfand SC, Edris WA, et al. The effects of taurolidine alone and in combination with doxorubicin or carboplatin in canine osteosarcoma in vitro. BMC Vet Res. 2013; 9:15 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/05/2014 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Osteosarcoma (OS) affects over 8000 dogs/year in the United States. The disease usually arises in the appendicular skeleton and metastasizes to the lung. Dogs with localized appendicular disease benefit from limb amputation and chemotherapy but most die within 6-12 months despite these treatments. Taurolidine, a derivative of taurine, has anti-tumor and anti-angiogenic effects against a variety of cancers. The following in vitro studies tested taurolidine as a candidate for adjuvant therapy for canine OS. Tests for p53 protein status and caspase activity were used to elucidate mechanisms of taurolidine-induced cell death. RESULTS: Taurolidine was cytotoxic to osteosarcoma cells and increased the toxicity of doxorubicin and carboplatin in vitro. Apoptosis was greatly induced in cells exposed to 125 μM taurolidine and less so in cells exposed to 250 μM taurolidine. Taurolidine cytotoxicity appeared caspase-dependent in one cell line; with apparent mutant p53 protein. This cell line was the most sensitive to single agent taurolidine treatment and had a taurolidine-dependent reduction in accumulated p53 protein suggesting taurolidine's effects may depend on the functional status of p53 in canine OS. CONCLUSION: Taurolidine's cytotoxic effect appears dependent on cell specific factors which may be explained, in part, by the functional status of p53. Taurolidine initiates apoptosis in canine OS cells and this occurs to a greater extent at lower concentrations. Mechanisms of cell death induced by higher concentrations were not elucidated here. Taurolidine combined with doxorubicin or carboplatin can increase the toxicity of these chemotherapy drugs and warrants further investigation in dogs with osteosarcoma.
Ziekman PG, Otter WD, Tan JF, et al. Intratumoural interleukin-2 therapy can induce regression of non-resectable mastocytoma in dogs. Anticancer Res. 2013; 33(1):161-5 [PubMed] Related Publications
AIM: Mast cell tumours (MCT) are common skin tumours in dogs. If complete surgical removal of the tumours is not possible, then another therapy is needed. In the current study we tested the therapeutic effect of intratumoural injection of interleukin-2 (IL-2). MATERIALS AND METHODS: Seven dogs had non-resectable cutaneous MCT. The tumours were injected with 4.5×10(6) IU IL-2. RESULTS: The early clinical effects in the seven dogs with cutaneous MCT were: complete regression (CR) in two dogs; partial regression (PR) in four, and stable disease (SD) in one dog. The final clinical effects were CR in three dogs, PR in two dogs, and PD in two dogs. CONCLUSION: This pilot study shows that intratumoural IL-2 application can exert an anti-MCT effect. A larger study would be required to precisely establish the magnitude of the therapeutic effect against MCT. A single application of IL-2 in cases of non-resectable MCT has no observable side-effects.
Denies S, Sanders NN Recent progress in canine tumor vaccination: potential applications for human tumor vaccines. Expert Rev Vaccines. 2012; 11(11):1375-86 [PubMed] Related Publications
Tumor vaccination holds great promise for the treatment of cancer and research concerning tumor vaccination in dogs is of great interest for veterinary as well as human medicine. Indeed, cancer is the leading cause of death in adult dogs and companion animals are acknowledged as excellent preclinical models for human oncology. The license of the veterinary melanoma vaccine (Oncept™) and Provenge® for the treatment of prostate cancer in men established tumor vaccination as a valid treatment modality for cancer. Although the results with this and other vaccines are promising, there are still some hurdles to overcome. In this article, preclinical and clinical trials with tumor vaccines in dogs are discussed, as well as the surplus value of canine cancer patients for human medicine.
Blackburn AL, Berent AC, Weisse CW, Brown DC Evaluation of outcome following urethral stent placement for the treatment of obstructive carcinoma of the urethra in dogs: 42 cases (2004-2008). J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2013; 242(1):59-68 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the outcome following urethral stent placement for the palliative treatment of obstructive carcinoma of the urethra in dogs. DESIGN: Retrospective case series. ANIMALS: 42 dogs with obstructive carcinoma of the urethra. PROCEDURES: Medical records for dogs in which a self-expanding metallic stent (SEMS) was used for the treatment of obstructive carcinoma of the urethra were reviewed. Signalment, diagnostic findings, clinical signs before and after SEMS placement, and patient outcome were analyzed. Fluoroscopic images were evaluated to determine the effects of stent size, obstruction length, tumor length, and urethral length and width on the incidence of incontinence or stranguria. RESULTS: Resolution of urinary tract obstruction was achieved in 41 of 42 (97.6%) dogs. After SEMS placement, 6 of 23 male and 5 of 19 female dogs developed severe incontinence, and 1 of 23 male and 1 of 17 female dogs developed stranguria. Stent length, diameter, and location were not associated with incidence of incontinence or stranguria. Median survival time after SEMS placement was 78 days (range, 7 to 536 days). Treatment with NSAIDs before and chemotherapeutics after SEMS placement increased median survival time to 251 days (range, 8 to 536 days). CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE: Urethral SEMS placement was an effective palliative treatment for dogs with obstructive carcinoma of the urethra; however, severe incontinence subsequently developed in 11 of 42 (26%) treated dogs. Adjunctive treatment of affected dogs with NSAIDs and chemotherapeutics significantly increased the median survival time.
Shaik J, Shaikh Mohammed J, McShane MJ, Mills DK In vitro evaluation of chondrosarcoma cells and canine chondrocytes on layer-by-layer (LbL) self-assembled multilayer nanofilms. Biofabrication. 2013; 5(1):015004 [PubMed] Related Publications
Short-term cell-substrate interactions of two secondary chondrocyte cell lines (human chondrosarcoma cells, canine chondrocytes) with layer-by-layer self-assembled multilayer nanofilms were investigated for a better understanding of cellular-behaviour dependence on a number of nanofilm layers. Cell-substrate interactions were studied on polyelectrolyte multilayer nanofilms (PMNs) of eleven different biomaterials. Surface characterization of PMNs performed using AFM showed increasing surface roughness with increasing number of layers for most of the biomaterials. LDH-L and MTT assays were performed on chondrosarcoma cells and canine chondrocytes, respectively. A major observation was that 10-bilayer nanofilms exhibited lesser cytotoxicity towards human chondrosarcoma cells than their 5-bilayer counterparts. In the case of canine chondrocytes, BSA enhanced cell metabolic activity with increasing number of layers, underscoring the importance of the multilayer nanofilm architecture on cellular behaviour.
Campos M, Peremans K, Vandermeulen E, et al. Effect of recombinant human thyrotropin on the uptake of radioactive iodine (¹²³I) in dogs with thyroid tumors. PLoS One. 2012; 7(11):e50344 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/05/2014 Related Publications
In humans, recombinant human thyrotropin (rhTSH) enhances radioactive iodine uptake (RAIU) in patients with differentiated thyroid cancer. No studies have been performed in veterinary medicine to optimize radioiodine treatment of thyroid cancer. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of rhTSH on the uptake of radioiodine-123 ((123)I) in dogs with thyroid tumors. Nine dogs with thyroid neoplasia were included in this prospective cross-over study. The dogs were divided in 2 groups. In one group, (123)I was administered for a baseline RAIU determination in week 1. In week 2 (after a washout period of 2 weeks), these dogs received rhTSH (100 μg IV) 24 h before (123)I injection. In the other group the order of the protocol was reversed. For each scan, the dogs received 37 MBq (1 mCi) of (123)I intravenously (IV) and planar scintigraphy was performed after 8 and 24 h for tumor RAIU calculation. Overall, rhTSH administration caused no statistically significant change on thyroid tumor RAIU at 8 h (p = 0.89) or at 24 h (p = 0.98). A significant positive correlation was found between the effect of rhTSH on tumor 8h-RAIU and rhTSH serum concentrations at 6 h (τ = 0.68; p = 0.03), at 12 h (τ = 0.68; p = 0.03) and at 24 h (τ = 0.78; p = 0.02) after rhTSH injection. This study suggests that IV administration of 100 μg rhTSH 24 h before (123)I has an inconsistent effect on thyroid tumor RAIU. Further studies are necessary to determine the best protocol of rhTSH administration to optimize thyroid tumor RAIU.
Konietschke U, Teske E, Jurina K, Stockhaus C Palliative intralesional interleukin-2 treatment in dogs with urinary bladder and urethral carcinomas. In Vivo. 2012 Nov-Dec; 26(6):931-5 [PubMed] Related Publications
AIM: The investigation of the influence of intralesional interleukin-2 (IL-2) on the clinical course and tumor progression in dogs suffering from urinary bladder and urethral carcinomas. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Medical records of 25 dogs diagnosed with advanced transitional cell carcinomas (TCC) were retrospectively reviewed. In 14 dogs, intralesional IL-2 treatment was performed by transabdominal ultrasound-guided injection. Seven dogs underwent cytoreductive surgery, followed by IL-2 injection into the tumor bed. All dogs received long-term non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. RESULTS: Adverse effects associated with IL-2 treatment were not observed. At re-examination, 17 dogs showed marked clinical improvement and regression of tumor size. Four dogs were in complete remission. CONCLUSION: Intralesional IL-2 application is a safe and minimally-invasive palliative treatment option in dogs suffering from advanced transitional cell carcinoma when surgical cure is impossible. Prognosis depends on tumor localization and feasibility of concomitant cytoreductive surgery.
Angstadt AY, Thayanithy V, Subramanian S, et al. A genome-wide approach to comparative oncology: high-resolution oligonucleotide aCGH of canine and human osteosarcoma pinpoints shared microaberrations. Cancer Genet. 2012; 205(11):572-87 [PubMed] Related Publications
Molecular cytogenetic evaluation of human osteosarcoma (OS) has revealed the characteristically high degree of genomic reorganization that is the hallmark of this cancer. The extent of genomic disorder in OS has hindered identification of the genomic aberrations driving disease progression. With pathophysiological similarities to its human counterpart, canine OS represents an ideal model for comparison of conserved regions of genomic instability that may be disease-associated rather than genomic passengers. This study used high-resolution oligonucleotide array comparative genomic hybridization and a variety of informatics tools to aid in the identification of disease-associated genome-wide DNA copy number aberrations in canine and human OS. Our findings support and build upon the high level of cytogenetic complexity, through the identification of shared regions of microaberration (<500 kb) and functional analysis of possible orthologous OS-associated genes to pinpoint the cellular processes most commonly affected by aberration in human and canine OS. Aberrant regions contained previously reported genes such as CDC5L, MYC, RUNX2, and CDKN2A/CDKN2B, while expanding the gene of interest list to include ADAM15, CTC1, MEN1, CDK7, and others. Such regions of instability may thus have functional significance in the etiology of OS, the most common primary bone tumor in both species.
Saito T, Tamura D, Nakamura T, et al. 4-methylumbelliferone leads to growth arrest and apoptosis in canine mammary tumor cells. Oncol Rep. 2013; 29(1):335-42 [PubMed] Related Publications
Hyaluronan (HA), a major component of the extracellular matrix (ECM), is synthesized by HA synthase (HAS) 1, HAS2 and HAS3 and is intricately involved in cell growth and metastasis. The HA synthesis inhibitor 4-methylumbelliferone (4-MU) has been reported to exhibit anticancer properties in various types of malignant tumors. However, the underlying mechanisms at the molecular and cellular levels remain unclear. In this study, to establish an animal model for studying the function of HA in human breast cancer, we investigated the antitumor effects of 4-MU using canine mammary tumor (CF33) cells. First, we investigated the effects of 4-MU on HA production in CF33 cells. Quantitative analysis of HA in culture media showed that 4-MU inhibited HA synthesis, accompanied by downregulation of HAS2 mRNA levels, in a dose-dependent manner at 24-72 h. Additionally, we observed a 4-MU-mediated decrease in the extent of the cell-associated HA matrix. We examined the effect of 4-MU on cell growth and apoptosis in CF33 cells. 4-MU markedly inhibited cell proliferation and induced apoptosis in CF33 cells. In particular, our experiments showed that the mechanism of 4-MU-induced apoptosis in CF33 cells involved increased levels of expression of pro-apoptotic BAX mRNA and protein molecules. These data suggest that 4-MU may be a candidate therapeutic agent for the treatment of canine mammary tumors. Furthermore, this study provides the first indication that the canine mammary tumor may be a suitable model for comparative study of the function of HA in human breast cancer.
Patil SS, Gentschev I, Adelfinger M, et al. Virotherapy of canine tumors with oncolytic vaccinia virus GLV-1h109 expressing an anti-VEGF single-chain antibody. PLoS One. 2012; 7(10):e47472 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/05/2014 Related Publications
Virotherapy using oncolytic vaccinia virus (VACV) strains is one promising new strategy for cancer therapy. We have previously reported that oncolytic vaccinia virus strains expressing an anti-VEGF (Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor) single-chain antibody (scAb) GLAF-1 exhibited significant therapeutic efficacy for treatment of human tumor xenografts. Here, we describe the use of oncolytic vaccinia virus GLV-1h109 encoding GLAF-1 for canine cancer therapy. In this study we analyzed the virus-mediated delivery and production of scAb GLAF-1 and the oncolytic and immunological effects of the GLV-1h109 vaccinia virus strain against canine soft tissue sarcoma and canine prostate carcinoma in xenograft models. Cell culture data demonstrated that the GLV-1h109 virus efficiently infect, replicate in and destroy both tested canine cancer cell lines. In addition, successful expression of GLAF-1 was demonstrated in virus-infected canine cancer cells and the antibody specifically recognized canine VEGF. In two different xenograft models, the systemic administration of the GLV-1h109 virus was found to be safe and led to anti-tumor and immunological effects resulting in the significant reduction of tumor growth in comparison to untreated control mice. Furthermore, tumor-specific virus infection led to a continued production of functional scAb GLAF-1, resulting in inhibition of angiogenesis. Overall, the GLV-1h109-mediated cancer therapy and production of immunotherapeutic anti-VEGF scAb may open the way for combination therapy concept i.e. vaccinia virus mediated oncolysis and intratumoral production of therapeutic drugs in canine cancer patients.
Finocchiaro LM, Glikin GC Cytokine-enhanced vaccine and suicide gene therapy as surgery adjuvant treatments for spontaneous canine melanoma: 9 years of follow-up. Cancer Gene Ther. 2012; 19(12):852-61 [PubMed] Related Publications
We present here the updated results after 9 years of the beginning of a trial on canine patients with malignant melanoma. This surgery adjuvant approach combined local suicide gene therapy with a subcutaneous vaccine composed by tumor cells extracts and xenogeneic cells producing human interleukin-2 and granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor. Toxicity was absent or minimal in all patients (0≤VCOG-CTCAE grade≤1). With respect to surgery-treated controls (ST), the complete surgery (CS) arm of this combined treatment (CT) significantly increased the fraction of local disease-free patients from 13 to 81% and distant metastases free from 32 to 84%. Even though less effective than the CS arm, the partial surgery (PS) arm of this CT was significantly better controlling the disease than only surgery (14% while PS-ST: 0%, P<0.01 and CS-ST: 5%, P<0.05). In addition, CT produced a significant sevenfold (CS) and threefold (PS) increase in overall survival. The CS-CT arm significantly improved both CS-ST metastasis-free- and melanoma overall survival from 99 days (respective ranges: 11-563 and 10-568) to >2848 days (81-2848 and 35-2848). Thus, more of 50% of our CT patients died of melanoma unrelated causes, transforming a lethal disease into a chronic one. Finally, surgery adjuvant CT delayed or prevented post-surgical recurrence and distant metastasis, significantly improved disease-free and overall survival maintaining the quality of life. Long-term safety and efficacy of this treatment are supported by the high number of CT patients (283) and extensive follow-up (>9 years). The successful clinical outcome encourages the further translation of similar approaches to human gene therapy trials.
da Costa A, Kohn B, Gruber AD, Klopfleisch R Multiple RT-PCR markers for the detection of circulating tumour cells of metastatic canine mammary tumours. Vet J. 2013; 196(1):34-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
In humans, detection of circulating tumour cells (CTCs) using nucleic acid-based methods such as reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) has proven to be of prognostic relevance. However, similar procedures are still lacking in veterinary oncology. To assess the correlation of CTC markers with the metastatic potential of canine mammary tumours, 120 peripheral blood samples from bitches with mammary carcinomas with (group 1) and without (group 2) histological evidence of vascular invasion and/or presence of lymph node metastases and mammary adenomas (group 3) were analyzed. Blood samples were collected in EDTA tubes and RNA was extracted within 48 h. Subsequently, the samples were tested by RT-PCR for a panel of seven CTC mRNA markers. CRYAB was the most sensitive single marker with a sensitivity of 35% and also the most specific marker with a specificity of 100% to detect group 1 blood samples. A multimarker assay combining four genes enhanced the sensitivity up to 77.5%, but decreased the specificity to 80%. CRYAB appeared to be highly specific but only moderately sensitive at detecting blood samples from dogs with metastatic tumours and detection significantly correlated with vascular invasion of primary mammary tumours. However, a multimarker assay of four genes significantly enhanced the sensitivity of the assay and is therefore preferable for CTC detection.